In the heat of the Texas summer, you don’t want to be stuck swimming in a pool when you could explore these fantastic lakes. From Amarillo to Austin or Houston to Dallas here are the best lakes for swimming in Texas. You’ll feel great when you come out of the water feeling refreshed and adventurous for choosing a lake adventure.

Most Scenic Lakes For Swimming In Texas

1. Lake Whitney

About an hour and a half drive south from Dallas, this lake is perfect for swimming, camping and many other fun activities. The area was designated as the Getaway Capitol of Texas, and once you explore the beautiful landscape you will understand why. There are golf courses and even an airplane landing strip located in the park. You can stay in cabins or stay in one of the many camping sites in the parking.

2. Lake Texoma

Lake Texoma is about an hour north of Dallas and is on the Red River between Oklahoma and Texas. It is one of the largest reservoirs in the country and great for swimming, sailing and many other attractions. Because of its large size, there are many beaches to explore. You can even rent a boat or bring your own to explore the islands within the lake. The Lakefest Regatta is a popular charity event that takes place each spring with hundreds of keelboats and sailors.

3. Twin Lakes

Best known as a scuba park, this clear watered lake is spring-fed and open for public swimming. It is located in Manvel, TX, about 40 minutes south of Houston. It is not as populated as other lakes surrounding Houston and is easily accessible. There is only a $5 admission fee and you can even try scuba diving for just $15.

4. Lake J.B. Thomas

This little known lake can be found in west Texas, about an hour and a half drive from Abilene. The lake is a water source for many cities in west Texas like San Angelo and Midland and is an oasis in the middle of dry land. A day pass costs $5 per car and camping is also available.

5. Balmorhea State Park

This lake is known for its pristine swimming, fishing and variety of wildlife. The world’s largest spring-fed pool is located about an hour west of Fort Stockton and is 72 degrees year round. This means you can start your summer adventures now! Admission is only $7 a person and the swimming areas feature fun diving boards and other activities.

6. Hamilton Pool

This natural pool will make you feel like you traveled somewhere tropical, but is located just 40 minutes from Austin. The pool was formed when the dome of an underground river collapsed forming a stunning jade colored oasis. Above the pool is a ceiling with stalactites and waterfalls. The area can get busy in the summer, so it’s best to go in the morning. The water also isn’t treated, so may sometimes be closed due to bacteria levels.

7. Hippie Hollow (Lake Travis)

Located in a secluded area north of Austin at Lake Travis, this distinctive area is clothing optional. It is Texas’ only clothing-optional public park and you must be 18 or over to enter. Go au-naturel and soak up the heat at Hippie Hollow’s pristine beaches or take a hike. Either way, you can’t miss this unique Austin attraction.

8. Inks Lake

This more secluded lake is perfect for kicking back and enjoying a nice swim or reading a book. The stunning blue water is famous not only for its swimming but also waterfalls. With over 7.5 miles of hiking trails, there is so much to explore. Located about an hour north of Austin, this is perfect for a day trip or you can stay at the park’s many campsites.

This article was written by Taylor Bishop.